New leadership and new priorities
By Ingemar Pongratz
The European Union has recently appointed the new Commissioners under the overall leadership of Ms Ursula van der Leyden. The process was specially interesting with Swedish eyes given the demands from the European Parliament to the Swedish candidate Ylva Johansson to clarify her priorities before she was approved.
The new leadership has recently presented the new EU priorities and there are several interesting news. These will hopefully lead to considerable benefits in the future. New leadership and new priorities is a natural development, and it will be interesting to see how these priorities are received by the Parliament and the European member states.
Among other, the European Commission has decided to establish a new Investment fund, primarily to support the transition of European Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SME) to become large innovation enterprises. This fund will integrate both public and private investor funding and will specialize in the SME growth process towards Initial Public Offering (IPO). This is a very interesting aspect. The outspoken idea to support the SME growth process towards IPO is a new development. The beneficiaries of this funds are thus required to plan entry into the stock market. This may reduce their direct ownership in their companies, something that we often see internationally but not in Europe.
The EU has also presented ambitious targets to fight climate change and to protect the environment. In fact the Commission has stated that the ambition is to protect the 2050 climate neutral targets into legislation. Coupled with ambitious plans to extend the CO2 emission trading scheme this could be a new interesting development. This is in line with the outspoken ambition that Europe should become the first climate neutral continent. It will be interesting to see what practical measures will be introduced and how the individual member states react to these measures.
The European Commission will also work to protect and preserve the environment, through a series of new activities which target the food chain, reduce environmental pollution levels and improve the conditions for rural communities. These areas will be supported through a number of activities including the Circular Economy Action Plan, the Farm to Fork strategy and other actions. In addition, the amount of single use plastics will be reduced through European wide legislation measures.
Other areas targeted include the financial sector, employment conditions for workers, gender, etc. Other important goals address the current world affairs, such as democracy, rule of law, security and Europe’s place in the international arena. All in all, a rather ambitious declaration. Interestingly however, very little is presented on health. The few lines that are presented on health and disease in the document relates to cancer and concrete actions on other disease areas are largely missing.
Ingemar Pongratz is a researcher and entrepreneur. Ingemar Pongratz established Fenix Scientific AB / Pongratz Consulting. We help universities and enterprises to apply for European Funding from for example the Horizon 2020 scheme. Please contact us if you wish to discuss our services and we can help you. Please use our contact information form or send an email to:
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